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Bose QC35 Bluetooth noise cancelling headphones review – an investment in quality

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Bose has released its best set of headphones with the QuietComfort 35 which have been re-engineered to deliver amazing audio quality – but this time it’s doing it without cables.

The QC35 headphones have Bluetooth onboard so there’s no need to use a cable to hear music from your smartphone, tablet or computer.

Now getting rid of the cable was one thing but one thing Bose certainly has not compromised is audio quality.

It is not the first pair of Bose headphones with Bluetooth – but it is its first to have Bluetooth AND noise cancellation

To our ears, the QC35 sounds better than the previous (and still available) model – the QC25.

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Design-wise, the QC35 look similar to the QC25 – the earcups look a millimeter or two larger on this new model – but you can tell they come from the same family.

Each earcup is swathed in synthetic protein leather so they are soft and comfortable on your head. Any they also completely enclose your ears.

Bose has always been the leader in noise cancellation and it has nailed it again here. I’m wearing the headphones while I type this.

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Even without listening to music I can barely hear the taps of my fingers on the keys of my MacBook Pro despite my ears only being about 40cm from the keyboard. And I’m a heavy typist.

And of course it works great when blocking out noise in your home, your office, in a public place, on public transport and also onboard an aircraft.

But we know a lot of people use Bose noise cancelling headphones when they fly and one thing a plane’s inflight entertainment system does NOT have is Bluetooth connectivity.

The good news is Bose hasn’t left you stranded. Inside the case is a regular 3.5mm audio cable along with an airline plug adaptor so you can still enjoy the best possible sound quality watching your movies and listening to the system’s audio.

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The QC35 headphones achieves its amazing noise cancellation through microphones inside and outside the earcup which continuously measure the ambient noise and generates an opposite signal to cancel them.

The result is hearing every intricate detail of your music or the blissful sound of silence.

When listening to music, we heard more depth and clarity at every level but what stood out for us was the noticeable improvement in the bass.

Under the hood is an active equalizer to maintain the quality of the audio even at high volumes.

And don’t forget there’s not a cable in sight. There are controls on the right earcup to play/pause and navigate your music as well as control the volume – there’s no cable for any inline controls which is why they’ve been conveniently located here.

The wireless convenience means you can walk around your home or office without being tied to your device.

We loved this freedom especially on a bus or train where there were no cables to tangle with.

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Making and receiving calls is also an excellent experience with the Bose QC35 headphones. Call clarity is exceptional.

One feature we really like is the voiceover that tells you the status of the headphones when you turn them on and connect.

The female voice announces the battery level and the name of the device you’re connected to.

She even announces who’s calling when someone rings so you can decide whether or not you want to answer the call without looking at your smartphone.

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And what about the battery? No need to carry a spare AAA battery anymore. This time out there’s a built-in rechargeable battery.

The battery is charged through the microUSB port on the right earcup with the supplied cable and when fully charged you’ll have up to 20 hours of Bluetooth/Noise Cancellation listening.

We listened the QC35 headphones all the way to San Francisco and back without a recharge – a combined flight time of 27 hours. We weren’t listening all of time but the battery covered our listening time there and back.

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And if the battery runs out, you can always connect the audio cable and continue listening like a regular pair of headphones.

You just won’t have Bluetooth or noise cancellation – but you can still listen to your music or movie.

The headphones comes with a hard case for easy transport are available in black or silver.

VERDICT

The Bose QC35 is the best noise-cancelling headphones money can buy. The fact they are now wireless is just testament to Bose’s engineering prowess and dedication to delivering top-shelf products.

Some people may baulk at the $499 price tag but you have to remember the Bose QC35 headphones are not simply a purchase – they are an investment in quality.